Spice, the highly-addictive banned synthetic cannabinoid drug, has been discovered in teabags at Bedford Prison.
The national newspaper for prisoners and detainees, Inside Time, reported that prisoners at Bedford were soaking teabags in spice and then selling them to other men who would break them open and smoke the leaves.
The Independent Monitoring Board (IMP) at HMP Bedford say the practice was only discovered when staff put the teabags through a scanner used to check incoming mail.
According to a Guardian article about spice, by journalist Mike Power, in November 2019, the drug is, “…ideal for dodging compulsory drug testing in prison: most tests can’t detect it, and it lacks the familiar fug of cannabis, so it can be smoked surreptitiously.”
A Prison Service spokesperson said, “We’re investing £100 million, as part of a wider £2.75 billion programme, to improve prison security with technology like body scanners.”